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Posts posted by Nightingale

  1. If the bag checks are like the ones at Disneyland, they're not really looking for weapons. They're looking for food and glass bottles and alcohol. Disneyland is a dry park, so people often try to smuggle in a flask, or their own food so they don't have to buy park food. If they find you have more with you than a snack or two, or glass bottles, you're pointed to the lockers by the picnic area outside the park.

    As far as I know, there are NO signs outside Disneyland prohibiting weapons. (if I'm wrong, someone please correct me). I don't know about DisneyWorld. The feeling here is that posting signs would detract from the "family atmosphere"...same reason why you don't walk through metal detectors. They don't want to start your experience at the "happiest place on Earth" by treating you like a criminal.

  2. Quote


    If "public safety" is not ever acceptable as a reason to limit such rights, why can't a law abiding person hang around an airport with a Stinger missile?

    Here's why -

    "Hold my beer and watch this."

    California man arrested in killing of girlfriend with cannon

    As a side note, many cannons are perfectly legal to own in California. Personally, I have access to two, maybe three if I ask nicely. We fire them fairly regularly, often times within full view of law enforcement, who have frequently commented "Cool! Can we fire it too?" There are some folks out here with a Gatling gun too.

    Of course, we're a historical re-enactment group, and we're usually shooting blanks...except when we're not.

  3. Quote

    >I would say, that is what a normal human would look like when eating properly

    It's funny - back in the middle ages "eating properly" meant eating a lot. Peasants ate celery and nuts because it was cheap to grow and could be had on farms. The upper class ate meat. Thus a fat person was eating properly, and the skinny people were often skinny and malnourished. If you had to put the label "healthy" on someone it was the fattest person around.

    Now that we have all this food available "eating properly" generally means not eating much.

    Very true. I started working at the Renaissance Faire back when I was 18, doing ballet for 5 hours a day and karate for another 3, and I had something like 7% body fat, not from dieting, I ate anything I wanted, but from so much exercise. I was at newbie orientation and they were discussing the typical Elizabethan peasant diet. The teacher of the class singled me out (and asked me before class if I was okay with it) because I was young and athletic looking (you could see muscle, not bones). He said something to the effect of "while our society today would call you healthy, back in the 1500s, that wasn't the case. You're thin and that would be dangerous... you wouldn't last the winter! Beauty ideals were very different because of health concerns."

    Too thin is not healthy. Models are human beings, not coat hangers. If they want to display clothes on hangers, do so. If they want to show how they look on humans, use healthy humans.

  4. I paid around that last year. Mortgage interest and medical deductions.

    It bugs when people say someone "exploited a tax loophole" or something like that, like people have been saying about Gingrich. I don't like the guy, but do people honestly expect someone to pay MORE taxes than the tax code requires? It's not a loophole, it's the LAW. If you don't like it, vote for people who will change it, but getting pissy at people who follow the law is ridiculous.

  5. Quote

    Training responders is an ordeal on the national level. Each state has their own rules and regulations as to what responders can and cannot do.

    The big issue becomes, how would you train hundreds of "skydive patrol" members? Would USPA be responsible to train everyone? And who would monitor the continuing education? Who would give the training? And finally, the big problem, who would be liable if a trained person really screwed up?

    Most DZ's have a fair amount of EMS qualified jumpers on hand at any given time. It now comes down to getting organized at their home DZ...

    The red cross has good emergency response classes, as well as specific advanced first aid/cpr and wilderness first aid (for situations where access to a doctor may not be fast. If your DZ is remote, this may be a good idea.).

    As for the liability, that depends on the laws of the individual state. This may be of help: Good Samaritan Law

  6. Quote

    I wonder how many of these it will take before all those cops so eagerly backing the all-seeing all-watching all-monitoring police state realize that it means "Yes, you, too, are in the cage and being watched, along with the rest of us."

    I got another taste last night on my way home from work. Saw a cop about to pull out onto dark empty road 300 yards ahead. Slowed down to let him pull in front of me. But no, he waited for me to arrive and pass. Then pulled out behind me, aggressively ran up onto my back bumper and rode my ass from 4 feet away into a reduced speed zone like he was trying to intimidate me into speeding up so he could bust me. "Oh, you wanna play bully, do you?"

    I declined to play and proceeded to crawl across town at precisely 33 mph refusing to give the slightest excuse.
    Cop got frustrated apparently because he then proceeded to play that game, following me at extreme close range all the way across town. Eventually gave up and broke off when I continued driving in such a way as to send the message "I made you before you even saw me and I'm not going to give you the satisfaction so give it up."
    I wonder how many people they intimidate into ticketable speeds that way?
    I feel SOOOO secure...

    I've had them do that to me. I just suddenly decide I need a gas station. No cop is going to wait ten minutes to ticket you while you pump gas, so they go find another mark. They're usually gone thirty seconds after you pull into the station, but I usually take the opportunity to fill the gas tank just to be sure.

  7. Given his age, I'm wondering if there was some mental deterioration that was perhaps a factor here. I've seen cases where older offenders are acting completely out of character due to early stage dementia, having been upstanding citizens all their lives. Sometimes the ethical/logical centers of the brain are the first to be affected. When an older person does something considered to be drastically out of character, a mental evaluation should always take place before passing judgment.

    That said, if he's of sound mental faculties and using what he learned in law enforcement to commit crimes, throw the entire book at him. Lock him up in that jail with his name on it, and once he's out, change the name.

  8. I don't think they could've done the BSR waiver without her parents being involved (please correct me if I'm wrong). When we heard back from Jesse, she said the BSR waiver had already been done prior to us asking about it, so we had nothing to do with that, but that Skydive Oregon wouldn't let her jump. Perris and Kapowsin will, provided their tandem manufacturers agree as long as Natalie's doctor clears her medically, both her parents (if applicable) sign the waiver, and at least one accompanies her to the dropzone.

    So, it could happen. Once we hear back from the tandem manufacturer, which is the last hurdle on our end, it's time to contact Natalie's people. We don't want to call and say "hey, these DZs will let you jump!" and then get a no from the gear company. We want all our ducks in a row so we don't risk disappointing a kid.

    So that's where we're at.


  9. Quote


    We've heard back from Jesse at USPA. A waiver has been issued for Natalie to skydive, and she's good to jump at any dropzone in the US that will accept her.

    :ph34r:Good job!

    Does she know she's allowed to jump yet? (Or her helpers know?)

    There's a difference between being allowed and finding a DZ that can take her that she can get to. We're working through the details and coming up with a list of DZs that are willing to take an underage jumper in her situation so she can choose what will be most convenient.

  10. I don't know Natalie. I just saw the news reports and thought "skydiving... I'm sure we can figure that one out!"

    These are the numbers of people that know the family and organized the Bucket List fundraisers.

    Misty Speakman 541-260-4454 or Kayla Kintner 541-404-4105.

    We've heard back from Jesse at USPA. A waiver has been issued for Natalie to skydive, and she's good to jump at any dropzone in the US that will accept her. We have been told that Skydive Oregon will not permit anyone under 18 to jump, which is their right, however, Skydive Kapowsin will take her as a jumper, weather permitting (GO KAPOWSIN!!! YOU GUYS ROCK!!!). Kapowsin is quite a drive from Coos Bay (7 hours, I'm told), but at least there is an option now, again, weather permitting.

    I am also checking with Southern California dropzones, as one of Natalie's other wishes is to visit Los Angeles. If she is going to be here anyway, perhaps Perris or Elsinore would be options as well, and the weather is a bit more reliable.

  11. Quote


    As for the DZ doing it for free, sure that'd be nice, but we don't know the financial situation of every DZ,

    Granted, but if you figure that the TI, packer, video guy, and pilot will work for free, the only remaining cost is the plane and wear/tear on the rig. You're looking at $75 for a 1/2 hour in a 182, and $15/$20 for the rig, so under $100. Maybe hit the TI and video up to cover their own slot, and they're in for $20/head, and the DZ only has to cough up $60.

    Let's face it, all involved are 'professionals' and make money jumping out of planes. Footing the bill for a jump of this nature is the least they could do.

    That aside, if the DZ/employees won't ptich in, anyone one who wants to donate can PM me for my paypal address, and I'm sure we can whip up the $300 to cover a tandem with video. Let's find out for sure that we need to raise the dough, and how much, before anyone sends any money so I don't have to deal with a bunch of refunds and the like if it turns out we don't need anything.

    Natalie has a bucket list fund. If the money's not used for a jump, she can use it for something else. The info is on her website above.

    She also has a wish to visit LA. Perhaps she would like to combine a visit to Los Angeles with a jump at one of our local dropzones. I will email them and see if it's possible.

  12. Is Kapowsin jumping right now or are they down for winter? Skydive Oregon is still running til the end of December on good weather days, according to their website.

    Worst case, maybe we can get her down to Perris or Snore or one of the Bay Area dropzones if weather becomes an issue up north.

  13. Quote


    Here's the reply I got asking how to go about a jump for her situation:

    This should be a snap to pull off. Get the RD to sign off on the waiver, and have the RD contact the BOD members to vote on this ASAP (waiting until the Feb meeting is not an option). Find a DZ and TI willing to do the jump, and it shouldn't take more than one phone call to the manufacturer to get their permission.

    The whole point of tandems needing to be 18 is the legal liability. It's got nothing to do with the mechanics of the jump or the gear, it's just that nobody wants to get sued. In these types of cases, a lawsuit isn't a real problem.

    Beyond that, the DZ, pilot, TI, video guy and packer should all be willing to do the jump for free. I've shot video for a couple of these 'make a wish' jumps, and would never dream of taking a dime for any of it. If some sick kid's dying wish is to do what I get to do every weekend, it's my honor to be able to share that with them.

    Who is the RD for Oregon?

    I've emailed Skydive Oregon, as that seems to be the closest DZ to Natalie, but haven't heard back yet. Does anyone have any connections there?

    As for the DZ doing it for free, sure that'd be nice, but we don't know the financial situation of every DZ, so that shouldn't be assumed. It'd be wonderful if they agree to get her in the air at all, so that's what we should ask for, and if they want to do more, that needs to come from them. I'm sure we can get enough donations to get the cost covered.

  14. Hi, everyone-

    Natalie Hill of Coos Bay, Oregon, is a 15 year old girl who is dying of cancer. She has osteosarcoma that started in her knee, metastasized to her lungs, and her doctors don't think she has long to live. She's posted a bucket list online of things she'd like to do in the time she has left, and one of the things she's listed is skydiving.

    Normally, we make people wait until they're 18 for a first jump. From what she's written and the news reports about her, barring a miracle, Natalie probably isn't going to see 18. Her tumors are inoperable and doctors are focusing on keeping her comfortable. According to her facebook page, her birthday is Dec 15, so she's almost 16. Are there still any dropzones that allow jumps at 16?

    I figured if there was somebody that can grant this girl's wish of a skydive, it would be somebody here, so I thought I'd post it. She's also got a ride in a hot air balloon on her list.

    If you can help or know someone who can, her website is linked below. You can get in touch with her on her facebook page, or by commenting in the updates section of the website.

    Thanks for reading.

    -Kris (an optimistic article from a year ago)
    (a more recent article referencing Natalie's Bucket List)